May 26, 2022

Amazon is filing lawsuits against fake review brokers who have been orchestrating the posting of misleading product reviews in exchange for money and free products, the company announced Tuesday (Feb. 22).

There are two major brokers in question — AppSally and Rebatest — which the release claims have misled shoppers through getting members to post “fake reviews” on Amazon and other retailers.

The legal action is part of what Amazon is doing to try and make sure shopping is “safe and trustworthy.”

Amazon says it’s been looking into the review brokers, and the release notes the companies in question have gotten 900,000 members “willing to write fake reviews.”

The brokers reportedly attempt to hide their activity, with AppSally allegedly selling fake reviews for $20 and telling “bad actors” to ship empty boxes to people who will write them. Then, AppSally would have them give photos to be uploaded alongside the reviews.

Rebatest’s scheme, according to Amazon, comes in the form of paying people writing 5-star reviews after their fake reviews are approved by the bad actors mentioned before.

“Fake review brokers attempt to profit by deceiving unknowing consumers and creating an unfair competitive advantage that harms our selling partners,” said Dharmesh Mehta, vice president of worldwide customer trust and partner support at Amazon. “We know how valuable trustworthy reviews are to our customers. That is why we are holding these review fraudsters…

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